The Right Drugs Will Set Her Straight

by Bill Brenner on February 21, 2012

Here’s an advertisement that pushes a lot of different thoughts into one’s mind.

Mood music:

A friend shared it on Facebook recently:

In case you can’t see the wording of this 1967 masterpiece, the high point is this:

Beset by the seemingly insurmountable problems of raising a young family, and confined to the home most of the time, her symptons reflect a sense of inadequacy and isolation. …Serax (oxazepam) cannot change her environment, of course. But it can relieve anxiety, tension, agitation, and irritability. … You can’t set her free. But you can help her feel less anxious.

Amber’s assessment is pretty much in line with my own. She said:

“I think it’s the specific wording of this one that got me – the immutability of the situation and the sense that once she was properly medicated, she’d return to obedience and idolatry.”

To me, this is a pretty accurate summary not only of how women were viewed back then, but how medication for mental disorders were viewed by the general public.

Unfortunately, in 2012, a lot of people still have the same stupid ideas about how these medications work. Each drug serves a specific purpose, targeting specific backfiring neurotransmitters and keeping the engine that is the human brain from breaking down. But the ad makes these drugs look like the stuff we get at the bar or in the street to numb us from reality.

The woman in the picture looks like she just realized that she’s been in every commercial for every cleaning product ever made — and she hasn’t been paid for any of it.

She’s probably not happy about bacteria-laden mops and brooms being pushed in her face.

Have we made progress since this ad was made? You tell me.

One observation, though: It’s 2012 and I’ve still never seen an ad for household cleaning products where the user is a man. It’s still all women, all the time.

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